Opening Windows Holographic to Partners for a New Era of Mixed Reality
Today at Computex, I joined Nick Parker and Alex Kipman on stage to celebrate incredible devices from across the Windows ecosystem – from PCs to gaming to IoT and beyond – and to share how the upcoming Windows 10 Anniversary Update will bring all new innovation, creating opportunities for modern computing devices.
The big news in our presentation today was a look forward to the future of computing, where the physical and virtual worlds intersect in all new ways, and create further scale for the Windows platform.
We’ve been on an incredible journey with Windows 10 to deliver more personal computing, where you interact with your devices as naturally as you interact with the world around you, your experiences travel with you, and designed from the ground up with security in mind. With over 300 million active devices already running Windows 10, we’re off to a great start.
Today we focused on the next frontier – mixed reality. Providing devices with the ability to perceive the world, breaking down the barriers between virtual and physical reality is what we call mixed reality. Imagine wearing a VR device and seeing your physical hands as you manipulate an object, working on the scanned 3D image of a real object, or bringing in a holographic representation of another person into your virtual world so you can collaborate. In this world, devices can spatially map your environment wherever you are; manipulating digital content is as easy and natural as picking up a box or sitting at a table; and you can easily teleport into your next meeting or travel together as a team.
The market for virtual reality devices is expected to be 80 million devices per year by 2020. However, many of today’s devices and experiences do not work with each other, provide different user interfaces, interaction models, input methods, peripherals, and content. And most virtual reality experiences can’t mix real people, objects, and environments into the virtual world, making creation and collaboration difficult. This is because they lack the human, environmental and object understanding that is already built into Windows 10.
Today, we announced that Windows Holographic is coming to devices of all shapes and sizes from fully immersive virtual reality to fully untethered holographic computing. Today we invited our OEM, ODM, and hardware partners to build PCs, displays, accessories and mixed reality devices with the Windows Holographic platform.
For our partners, this creates new business opportunities, unlocking mixed reality experiences across devices. For developers, Windows Holographic apps can be written today with confidence that they will run on the broadest set of devices.
We are excited to be working with Intel, AMD, Qualcomm, HTC, Acer, ASUS, CyberPowerPC, Dell, Falcon Northwest, HP, iBuyPower, Lenovo, MSI and many others supporting great virtual reality experiences on Windows 10, and we are looking forward to opening up Windows Holographic to the partner ecosystem for the future.
Windows: The Only Mixed Reality Platform
Windows 10 includes Windows Holographic, the platform that powers the amazing mixed reality experiences available on Microsoft HoloLens today. It offers a holographic shell and interaction model, perception APIs, and Xbox Live services.
Consistent with our approach to Surface, our development efforts on HoloLens are designed to push the limits and create opportunity across the ecosystem.
We began shipping Microsoft HoloLens in March and customers across industries are embracing the potential of mixed reality already, including NASA, Volvo, Lowe’s and more. The development opportunity is significant – as all holographic apps are Universal Windows apps, and all Universal Windows apps can be made to run on the Windows Holographic platform. In fact, there are already hundreds of Universal Windows Apps in the Windows Store today that run on Windows Holographic. I’m so impressed by the creativity of the community using Windows Holographic today – some of my favorite examples range from gardening to architecture to fashion design to flying drones and other apps.
Welcoming our Partners to Mixed Reality
We would love for you to join us as we deliver this new world of mixed reality. Interested partners should go to WinHec.com to learn more and sign-up to join us at WinHEC this fall in Shenzhen and Taipei.
I can’t wait to see what our partners do with Windows Holographic.
The full Computex 2016 keynote about Microsoft’s vision for creating more personal computing with Windows 10 is now available to watch on demand here.